The Battle of Badr and the Issue of the Captives - II

The Battle of Badr and the Issue of the Captives - II
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The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), did not forget those who had not attended the battle for special reasons that were valid under the Sharee‘ah, like:

-      ‘Uthmaan ibn ‘Affaan, may Allah be pleased with him, who was nursing his sick wife, Ruqayyah, may Allah be pleased with her, the daughter of the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention )
-      Abu Lubaabah, may Allah be pleased with him, who went out to fight but the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), commanded him to go back and deputized him to be in charge of Madeenah.
-      Al-Haarith ibn Haatib, may Allah be pleased with him, whom the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), sent to Banu ‘Amr ibn ‘Awf on a special mission.
 
Then came the second issue, which was how to deal with the captives. The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), consulted his Companions as to what he should do with them. Abu Bakr, may Allah be pleased with him, suggested that he should release them in return for a ransom, arguing that the money would give the Muslims strength against the disbelievers; moreover, Allah The Almighty might guide them to Islam. However, ‘Umar ibn Al-Khattaab and Sa‘d ibn Mu‘aath, may Allah be pleased with them, were of the opinion that the captives should be killed because they were the leaders of disbelief. In addition, this would be a powerful blow against the people of Makkah. Also, ‘Abdullaah ibn Rawaahah, may Allah be pleased with him, said, "O Messenger of Allah, put them in a valley where there is much firewood and burn them."
 
The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), preferred the suggestion of Abu Bakr, may Allah be pleased with him, and chose the ransom. However, Allah The Almighty rebuked His Messenger,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), for this choice, Saying (what means): {It is not for a prophet to have captives [of war] until he inflicts a massacre [upon Allah's enemies] in the land. Some Muslims desire the commodities of this world, but Allah desires [for you] the Hereafter. And Allah is Exalted in Might and Wise. If not for a decree from Allah that preceded, you would have been touched for what you took by a great punishment. So consume what you have taken of war booty [as being] lawful and good, and fear Allah. Indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.}[Quran 8:67-69]
 
The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), was rebuked merely for accepting the ransom while the Muslims had not yet attained the ultimate victory, something which might weaken them and give their enemies a chance to attack them again, which was certainly not in the interest of the Muslims.
 
This had a profound effect on the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ). The books of Seerah (prophetic biography) mention that ‘Umar, may Allah be pleased with him, passed by the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), and Abu Bakr, may Allah be pleased with him, while they were weeping. ‘Umar, may Allah be pleased with him, said, “O Messenger of Allah, why are you and your companion weeping? Tell me the reason, for I too will weep. If not, I will at least pretend to weep out of sympathy for you.” The Messenger of Allah,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said: “I am weeping for what happened to your companions for taking the ransom. I was shown the torture to which they were subjected. It was brought to me as close as this tree [he pointed to a tree close to him].” [Muslim]
 
Afterwards, Allah The Almighty allowed the Muslims to take ransom from the captives, and this ransom varied from one captive to another; some of them paid 4000 dirhams while others paid more. As for those who could not afford to pay a ransom, they were ordered to teach ten Muslim children how to write.
 
Zaynab, may Allah be pleased with her, the daughter of the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), wanted to ransom her husband, Abul-‘Aas, with a necklace that had been owned by Khadeejah, may Allah be pleased with her. When the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), saw it, he felt very sad, and said to the captors: “If you can consider releasing her captive and giving the necklace back to her [it will be good of you].”The Companions were pleased to accept that and released him. [Abu Daawood]
 
Concerning Al-‘Abbaas, some of the Muslims asked permission from the Messenger of Allah,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), saying, “O Messenger of Allah! Allow us not to take the ransom of our nephew Al-‘Abbaas.” The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), replied:“Do not leave a single dirham thereof.”[Al-Bukhari]
 
The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), ordered the Muslims to treat the captives well; they obeyed him and set excellent examples. A brother of Mus‘ab ibn ‘Umayr, may Allah be pleased with him, said, “I was with a group of the Ansaar and whenever they served lunch or dinner, they used to eat dates and give me the bread because of the order of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ).” [At-Tabaraani]
 
This good treatment had a great effect on the captives such that many of them embraced Islam later on, like As-Saa’ib ibn ‘Ubayd and Abu ‘Azeez, may Allah be pleased with them. Moreover, when those captives returned to Makkah, they spoke of nothing but the generosity and noble manners of the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), and his Companions.  
 
Nevertheless, this did not prevent the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), from killing those who showed intense hostility against the Muslims such as ‘Uqbah ibn Abi Mu‘ayt who was killed by ‘Ali ibn Abi Taalib, may Allah be pleased with him, and An-Nadhr ibn Al-Haarith, who was one of the main instigators of war against the Muslims.
 
The victorious army returned to Madeenah preceded by Zayd ibn Haarithah, may Allah be pleased with him, who was riding the she-camel of the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), to bring the people of Madeenah the glad tidings of victory. On hearing the news, the people went out to receive their returning brothers and among them was the mother of Haarithah, may Allah be pleased with her, who was informed that her young son had been killed. She came to the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), and said, “O Messenger of Allah, you know how dearHaarithah was to me. If he is in Paradise, I shall remain patient and hope for the reward ofAllah The Almighty, but if it is not so, then you shall see what I will do.”He said:“May Allah be merciful toyou! Have you lost your senses? Do you think there is only one Paradise? There are manyParadises and your son is in the highest Paradise of Al Firdaws.”[Al-Bukhari]  
The hypocrites did not share in the happiness of the Muslims because this victory foreshadowed the end of their dreams to dominate Madeenah once again. For this reason, they had resorted to hypocrisy and conspiracy against the Muslims. The head of the hypocrites was ‘Abdullaah ibn Ubayy ibn Salool, who said, “This matter [the leadership of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) in Madeenah] has been established, so pledge allegiance to the Messenger of Allah  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention )." [Al-Bukhari]

The Battle of Badr and the Issue of the Captives - I

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